Keeping WordPress Up to Date and Secure

Keeping the WordPress core up to date is incredibly important for many reason including the following:

  • Keeps you site files patched with the latest security updates
  • Keeps your files up to date with latest bug fixes
  • Helps ensures you site is as secure as possible
  • Extends the lifetime of your Website and investment

Updating with a Single Click – BUT WAIT!

WordPress makes updating to the latest version very easy, so easy in fact that it can be done with a single click of the mouse. However you must be careful when updating any part of WordPress and in particular the core by taking a manual backup of your site prior updating.

What This Video Covers

  • Recognizing when a new version of WordPress has been released
  • Best practices prior to updating
  • Taking a manual backup of both the files and database prior to updating
  • Updating the WordPress core and what to do immediately following the update.

Video Transcript
Hi there. Let’s talk about WordPress updates. Now this is different than theme updates or plug-in updates. What I’m talking about are updates to the core, those that are published by WordPress.

When a new version of WordPress becomes available, upon logging into your WordPress site you’ll notice across the top that you typically get a message regarding the update up top. You’ll notice here that we’re using WordPress version 3.5.2 and the latest version is 3.6 so we’re being prompted to update.

Also along the administration bar we have a count of all pending updates and on the left side we’ll have a number next to the update menu item letting us know how many updates are pending.

So if we go to the update section we’re going to see a listing of all pending updates for our particular WordPress install. Now notice that plug-
ins and themes are empty here. I always like to make sure that I’ve updated all my plug-ins and all my themes prior to doing a core update.

Now making a core update is just as easy as hitting update now. However, please take note of the important message up top here. Before updating, please back-up your data base and files. I cannot stress the importance of this enough.

You know 99.9 percent of the time these go incredibly smooth and incredibly fast. However, the one time it doesn’t, if you don’t have a back-up you’re going to be spending hours putting your site back together and or you’re going to have to cover the costs of hiring a professional to help you with that.

So before we do anything we’re going to take a back-up of our site. Now one of my favorite plug-ins is Duplicator. This allows you to quickly create a back-up of both files and data base with a single click. I actually go over this in another video. We’re just going to go ahead and create a back-up.

Now it’s very important to make sure you have a back-up of your data base and your files. One or the other is not a complete back-up and when making a core update both the data base and the file structure are going to be modified so you want to make sure that you have a complete back-up.

There, our back-ups done now we can go ahead and download that to our computer and we have a complete back-up just in case something goes wrong.

Now let’s go back to the update screen. Now we’re ready to update our WordPress install. We have our back-up, our plug-ins are up to date, our themes are up to date and now we can hit “update now”.

Now this usually only takes a little bit to do, it’s very fast as you’ll see there and boom, we’re done. We’re now running the latest version of WordPress. Typically when there is an update to WordPress you’ll get a welcome message as you see here and all of our notifications that pending updates are needed are gone.

And that’s updating the core to WordPress. Easy enough.